"An Attempt to Accept: A Love Letter to Sensory Play"


Hey there, fellow parents!

Let's talk about something near and dear to my heart: the messiness of sensory play. As the founder of MelyLu Sensory Play, I've seen my fair share of spilled rice, squished play dough, and glitter-covered surfaces. It took me a while (like a looong while), but you know what? I wouldn't have it any other way now...please don't stop reading! Just humor me for a second. 

Look, I get it—messes can be daunting. The thought of cleaning up after a sensory play session can sometimes feel like a Herculean task. Trust me, my perfectionist neat-freak brain goes haywire just thinking about it...but here's the thing: when it comes to sensory play, I've realized that the mess is part of the magic. 

Think about it—when your little one is knee-deep in a sensory bin, exploring, experimenting, problem solving, imagining, and creating, they're not just making a mess; they're engaging their senses, honing their fine motor skills, and unleashing their creativity in ways that are truly awe-inspiring. And as a parent, there's nothing more rewarding than watching your child's face light up with joy and wonder as they dive into a world of exploration and master a new skill. Plus, there's really nothing a vacuum cleaner can't clean up.

So rather than viewing the mess as a burden, I'm trying to embrace it as a sign of a job well done. After all, a messy play session is a surefire indicator that your child is fully engaged, building essential skills, and thoroughly enjoying themselves. And let's be honest – sometimes, those messy moments often make the best memories.

Of course, I'm not suggesting that you throw caution to the wind and let the mess run rampant. It's important to set some ground rules and establish boundaries for sensory play. Whether it's designating a specific play area (like a play-room or outside) or even laying down a plastic tablecloth on the kitchen table to contain the mess, a little bit of preparation can go a long way in managing the chaos. Another tip is to stay consistent with your ground rules—your kiddo will know what to expect...what's cool with you and especially what isn't! Not to mention, I'll trade a little cleaning up for an hour of quiet time all-day-every-day! 

The way I see it, if they are safe and having fun, I've learned to chill out a bit (believe me, that took a while too). As hard as it may be, sometimes we just have to let go of the need for perfection and embrace the messiness of play; it just is what it is sometimes. I totally get it...it's hard to accept the sticky fingers and the glittery floors, but they also come with learning and laughter-filled memories. Because in the grand scheme of things, those messy moments are what childhood is all about, and it doesn't last forever (or so they keep telling me).

So, here's to trying to suppress our perfectionist neat-freak urges with everything we got (I'm saying that again because sometimes I'm the mom in the back who needs to hear it louder), and seeing the mess as part of the learning process. May your play sessions be (slightly) messy, massively magical, and filled with endless possibilities!

Until next time friends...

Happy Playing, and Learning! 🤓

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